November 14, 2012

Shuttling the Shuttle

My fellow Los Angeles correspondent Virginia Hein sketched Endeavor in its permanent home at California Science Center. (Thanks, Virginia!)

Before it got there, the shuttle was flown on top of a modified Boeing 747, with two escort jets by its side. This was as close as I got to see the shuttle on its last flight between going to work and running errands, unfortunately. The shuttle and its carrier looked like a large gray bird flying in the haze.

I then found that the shuttle was parked in Inglewood late at night before its long journey to the Science Center began. I inched my way to the front of the crowd to get a closer to Endeavor this time - it was awe-inspiring to see two Southern Californian icons - Randy's Donuts and the space shuttle - side by side. A plane heading to LAX passed by from time to time, the smell of donuts filled the air, and helicopters with cameras buzzed overhead. Someone shouted, "Once in a lifetime, y'all!", and he was right.

Hope I get to visit and sketch it in more detail soon!


VHein said...

Yay, Shiho! You got it! Wonderful quick impression of the shuttle riding piggyback with its 2 escorts, and I love that drawing with the shuttle parked next to Randy's Donuts...once in a lifetime indeed!

matthew_c said...

I love the bottom sketch with the shuttle just nosing around the corner of the donut shop.
With Virginia's comments about the heat resistant tiles, I wonder how the windows we see in your sketch withstand the heat?
You know, I vaguely remember the first launch of a shuttle, it was really something.

Shari Blaukopf said...

Great sketches Shiho. And it is wonderful to see two different depictions of different stages of the same event.

Shiho Nakaza said...

Thanks for your comments! I forgot to mention - I did get to hold the heat-resistant tile from the shuttle! The piece was about a size of a brick, but weighed very little. People from California Science Center was at Randy's Donuts and passing the tile around for people to touch. It was so fascinating.